Monitoring Partners Near Bay of Bengal as Cyclone Mahasen Approaches

As Cyclone Mahasen moves over the Bay of Bengal toward the coast of Bangladesh and Myanmar, Direct Relief is reaching out to its health center partners located in the storm’s projected path and is preparing to respond to urgent requests.

The cyclone – which is expected to make landfall Thursday – has already brought heavy rains to Sri Lanka, causing at least seven deaths and leaving nearly 3,000 people homeless, reports The Times of India. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration  (NASA) expects the storm to reach hurricane force by Wednesday.

Through the use of software from technology partner Palantir, Direct Relief is monitoring storm tracking updates from the Joint Typhoon Warning Center in relation to its local partners (shown in yellow).

Humanitarian workers are concerned about the tens of thousands of people living in low-lying refugee camps directly in the cyclone’s path. Most vulnerable are the Rohingya Muslims living in fragile camps in flood-prone areas, notes Voice of America.

During and after flooding, many people are at high risk of developing skin and eye infections, respiratory infections, diarrhea, malaria and cholera. Highly requested products following flooding events include: nutritional products, IV solutions, antibiotics, wound care, personal hygiene supplies and medicines for chronic conditions.

When Cyclone Nargis devastated Burma in 2008, killing more than 130,000 people, Direct Relief coordinated with local groups on the ground to provide more than $2 million worth of medical supplies and grants in order to aid those affected by the storm and help the country rebuild and recover.

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